Marriage and family therapist Sharon Nolfi lists six activities and ways for kids to stay in touch with their grandparents.
Share old photos. Let grandparents share stories behind the pictures: how Grandpa almost missed the wedding, or how a newly wed Grandma burned the Thanksgiving turkey.
Create a memory book. Put together photos and souvenirs of times spent together; add written comments by both grandparent and child.
Mail, mail, mail. Handwritten letters, cards and kid’s artwork are always a joy to receive the old-fashioned way, but email is great for frequent and quick exchanges.
Video-chat. Purchase inexpensive video cams for yourself and for grandparents who use computers. Download free software from Skype.com, and make free video calls to other Skype users anywhere in the world. Facebook pals can now connect easily via Skype, too, and the recently launched Google+ offers video-chat features in its social network.
Choose engaging outings. Concentrate on activities that promote conversation. Visits to zoos, parks, or museums are better than sitting in a movie theater.
Send the kids for overnight visits. If grandparents are able, let kids sleep over and experience their elders’ daily routines.
Sharon Nolfi is a licensed marriage and family therapist and school psychologist, as well as a mom.
How to Help Your Children Build and Maintain Relationships With Their Grandparents
Wish You Were Here: How to Keep Kids Close to Distant Relatives